2013 Food Challenge: Sweet Potatoes, with due credit to Tomatoes.

I was going to write a post on cherry and grape tomatoes, but that would be too easy. All I have to do with those babies is open the box and eat. No-brainer there. True, they are from Florida... and they did fill the quota, along with carrots and arugula, of my vegetable intake for the 9 days I spent in the car last month crisscrossing the continent. Thank you tomatoes. I love your sweetness, plumpness, and cheerful sunny colors.

But I will write about sweet potatoes instead. Yes, the one that looks like a potato and, once you buy it, have no idea what to do with it.

Sweet potatoes are an incredible vegetable. Traditionally, they are considered to be good for the blood. In Western lingo, sweet potatoes contain iron, which is an important nutrient for women like me that do not eat a whole lot of meat. Those sweeties will also give you vitamins B6, C and D, carotenoids, magnesium and potassium. Yes potatoes do pale in comparison: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/9-reasons-to-love-sweet-potatoes.html?page=1.

Why sweet potatoes? Because I happen to be cooking them tonight, plain and simple. Cut them up to look like potato fries. Toss them, with your hands, in a generous amount of olive oil and sea salt... and feel the softness that the oil gives your hands afterwards- added bonus. Then place them in a glass ware or cast iron pan to roast. I like to bake them in Florence, my cast iron pan, because it is easier to clean Florence than to scrub away crusty glass pans. I also use, when Florence is not available, a stainless steel frying pan. Never use Teflon!!!!! Never. Throw that junk, along with anything Calphalon, away. How many times have I written this, along with info to back it up? Not enough. So here it is: http://www.freshfoodunderground.com/2010/02/on-quest-to-get-rid-of-teflon.html, and http://www.freshfoodunderground.com/2010/12/what-are-you-cooking-your-food-in.html.

Now that your hands are nice, salty and oily, you can lick them, or you can just proceed to step 2- wash them. Step 3, place the potatoes in the oven preheated to 400ºF. If you are like me, and don't want to deal with waiting, put them to bake as the oven preheats to the right temp. Those babies are so hardy, they come out tasting great no matter what. Bake/roast for about 15 minutes, toss them around, put them back and bake/roast for another 15, or until they are as blackened as you wish them to be. I love mine like this. Take them out, and they are ready to eat alone with a nice beer, or with a salad and quinoa as I am about to enjoy mine. They are also yummy with chicken, kibbies, for school lunches, snacks, rice and beans... you name it, and they will follow your orders. Enjoy!

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